‘Natural is best’: Funktion-One’s Tony Andrews on the audio lessons learned during an award-winning career

By Tara Lepore ,

2017 Pro Sound Awards Lifetime Achievement winner Tony Andrews shared his thoughts on a decade-spanning career in audio after he picked up his accolade last month.

A video interview with the Funktion-One founder reveals some of his career highlights to date, including building the second Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury in 1980 and working on Roger Waters’ The Wall show in Berlin.

“I think after all this time, I’m finally beginning to get a serious grip on what’s going on with audio,” he says in the video. “In the last two years we’ve made more forward progress than I can hardly ever remember. It’s really coming together at the moment.”

He also spoke of Funktion-One’s philosophy to get its products completely perfect. “We will spend as much time as it takes to get our drivers to behave the way we would like them to, without recourse to electronics, even though it’s easy. We will not do that, because it isn’t the same thing."

In the last two years we’ve made more forward progress than I can hardly ever remember. It’s really coming together at the moment

Tony Andrews

Andrews picked up his Lifetime Achievement award at the 2017 Pro Sound Awards, held this year for the first time at The Steel Yard in London.

Andrews added: “I grew up in an audio time before there was even equalisation and the ability to fuck about with the sound endlessly. You had to get it right. There is rather an emphasis on getting any old sound, and using plugins and EQ and any special effects to try and make it nice – but sound is one of those things that you can’t do that to, without actually destroying it. When you first record [something], get that right, and then don’t do anything to it. Natural is absolutely best. […] If you get it right at the source, then everything else follows much more easily.”

Watch the full video with Tony Andrews here.

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